(This is about Armenian coffee)
You are interested in Armenian coffee, aren’t you? That is why we guess you have reached this article.
Well, Armenian coffee is tasty and very exotic for some people who especially live outside Caucasus, Middle East regions and Russia. This article will talk about some stories about Armenian coffee and its recipe so that you will become a master of Armenian coffee after you read this.
Ok, now please enjoy your journey to explore about Armenian coffee!
A little bit of Armenian coffee history
As the title of this article might suggest; “Armenia is a land of coffee!” This is what we want to say but not really.
Coffee, unfortunately, doesn’t grow in here Armenia and it probably never will.
The origins of drink, one of the most valuable traded commodities of the world nowadays, date back to very old times and can be found in Kaffa, a region in Ethiopia.
So, it can be said that the coffee beans made their way to the outside world starting from Ethiopia, through Arab world, then to the Ottoman Empire, an inseparable part of which were the western Armenians of medieval period.
The story about coffee is as followed.
A goatherd simply found out that his animals got their energy increased after munching on the beans of that plant. Here, this man made up his mind to roast and grind the plant which turns out to have the same effect on human beings as well.
He really did a great job, didn’t he!?
Armenian Coffee and Armenian people
Well, we have seen some facts about coffee origins. Now, let’s take a look at how Armenian coffee became one of the important components in the life of Armenian people and its culture.
Armenians are the ones who brought the recipe of coffee to Europe?
It has been said that Armenians were among the first people who introduced Europeans with coffee and coffee-shops by establishing ones in Armenian-populated cities of that time.
Not surprisingly, among them, we can mention the very first coffee houses in Vienna and in Paris, opened by Hovhannes Astvatsatour, more known as Johannes Diodato.
Well, do you think you can agree by hearing the the very appropriate name for the pioneer of coffee in Europe?
As more information, in the decorations of coffee houses at that time, Armenian fashions were mainly applied. The same can be said about London and Prague coffee houses during the same period as well.
Distinctive way of calling “coffee” found in Armenian
Armenians and Ethiopians are known as the only two nations calling “coffee” and its variations in a very distinctive way rather than the dominating names of the drink.
In both Eastern and Western Armenian, “coffee” sounds like “soorj”.
The pronunciation and the origins of the word are not clear to us but it might be resembling “sev joor” that means “black water”. Or, another possibility is that the name originally came from the sound made when slurping a piping hot brew.
Difference between Armenian coffee and Arabian coffee
Some people might think that Armenian coffee is the same as Arabian coffee after drinking both but they are different. Armenian coffee differs from Arab coffee due to the absence of cardamom in it. Cardamom is a true identification of Arab coffee.
Moreover, the Armenian coffee, soorj, is usually prepared in a long-handled coffee pot called “jazve” or “jazva”. This way of making coffee refers to as Haykakan (Armenian) or, Arevelyan (Eastern) which is widely said too.
“There is no turkish coffee” Armenian people would say.
If you travel to Armenia and ask them whether or not there is any Turkish coffee, Armenian people would say there is no Turkish coffee and you should never expect to be served a cup of Turkish coffee in Armenia.
You may find that most of ordinary Armenian people have this sort of approach and treatment toward Turkish coffee.
This negative attitude has undoubtedly been entrenched by ethnic conflicts lasting for centuries and has become, we can definitely say, a huge part of the nation’s collective memory unfortunately.
So, rather than wondering some commonalities and differences between Armenian and Turkish coffee, just simply enjoying sipping and tasting the hot drink in Armenia!
Recipe of Armenian coffee
You are probably waiting for the most interesting part of this article, right?
Sure, it’s the process of preparing Armenian coffee for your guests, family members, friends or just for yourself. Now, it is high time to make Armenian coffee with the recipe below!
Before starting making Armenian coffee
- Create the mood first of all in order to acquire the taste
- Prepare an Armenian coffee pot (the above-mentioned “jazva”)
- To be properly made, understand you need patience, but the result will undoubtedly be worth it!
After you finish making the Armenian coffee
Finally, it is about time to start drinking it!
- When serving the coffee, please set the empty cups on a serving tray
- Start pouring a little coffee into each of the cups but do not fill one cup at a time, otherwise, there may not be enough foam to go around ( Armenians mostly love coffee with its foam on!).
- If do want, you can pour some mild but Armenians usually do not drink it with milk.
- Never be alarmed if there is a thick and muddy coating at the bottom of your cup because it is quite normal.
Fun after drinking Armenian coffee
When you are finally done with the drinking part, you can turn your coffee cup upside down, of course, in a saucer. Let the sludge coat the sides.
Then, a wise old men or women who will surely be around if you are in Armenia will tell your fortune by “reading” the patterns of the coffee muddy coating.
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There is so much “Armenianness” in drinking, making, and serving coffee.
Sorry to say that it is sad for many foreigners who usually drink less tasty coffee made in machines. It can be said in those machines, the water and coffee grounds pass by each other like strangers on fast-moving trains, never ever getting really friendly or much less intimate.
So, try Armenian coffee, then, you would really fall in love with the much richer Armenian coffee!